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Notice to Readers: National Epilepsy Month -- November 1999

November is National Epilepsy Month. Epilepsy is a central nervous system disorder, characterized by unprovoked recurrent seizures, that affects approximately 2.3 million persons in the United States. Of these, approximately 300,000 are school-aged children.

Many persons in the United States do not know how to appropriately assist a person having a seizure; some incorrectly believe they should place something in the seizing person's mouth or restrain movements. However, both actions can be harmful. Instead, anyone assisting a seizing person should loosen clothing, remove objects the person may bump against or hit, and remain nearby to help the person move to a chair or couch when the seizure ends.

The Epilepsy Foundation has launched the "Be Seizure Smart" campaign as the focus of this month's activities. The campaign is a nationwide initiative directed at schools to dispel myths and to educate school staff about effectively responding to students during seizures.

Additional information about epilepsy or the "Be Seizure Smart" campaign is available from the Epilepsy Foundation, telephone (800) 332-1000, or on the World-Wide Web,* and

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Page converted: 10/28/1999


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